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Monday, June 02, 2014

OTP - June 2014: Iraq war costs U.S. more than $2 trillion: study

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. war in Iraq has cost $1.7 trillion with an additional $490 billion in benefits owed to war veterans, expenses that could grow to more than $6 trillion over the next four decades counting interest, a study released on Thursday said.

The war has killed at least 134,000 Iraqi civilians and may have contributed to the deaths of as many as four times that number, according to the Costs of War Project by the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University.

When security forces, insurgents, journalists and humanitarian workers were included, the war’s death toll rose to an estimated 176,000 to 189,000, the study said.

Bitter Mouse Posted: June 02, 2014 at 07:48 AM | 4613 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: otp, politics, stupid ideas

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   3101. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 17, 2014 at 10:17 PM (#4728952)
Flip Flop
   3102. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: June 17, 2014 at 10:18 PM (#4728953)
Mitt Romney … the last candidate to lose a Presidential election and then win their party's nomination was Nixon, right? Before him, Stevenson, Dewey, Bryan, Grover Cleveland I guess, etc. It has never been very common, but the "no second acts in American life" principle has been kicking in hard of late.

I assume we can skip the JQ Adams/Jackson/WH Harrison/Clay/Pinckney crew of try-try-againers as not being terribly germane to which way Ohio will swing in 2016. Four losing candidates were renominated by their parties since Grover Cleveland went 2-1. Each of them lost support in the rematches.

William Jennings Bryan went from 46% to 45% to 43%.
Thomas Dewey got 46% in his first loss, 45% in his second.
Adlai Stevenson got 44% in his first loss, 42% in his second.

The one winner, Richard Nixon, actually saw his percentage go down 6% from 1960 to 1968. Nixon won the second time because a sitting president quit the race due to an escalating war that had already killed 20,000+ Americans, because one potential opponent was murdered, and because a third party candidate diverted over 13% of the vote, in a time when the electoral map was notably different from today.

Good luck replicating those conditions.
   3103. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 17, 2014 at 10:22 PM (#4728955)
It is hilahilArious (Hillaryous?) to see the liberals here go on and on about how the Clintons are loathsome and pathetic people, and yet these same liberals will nevertheless pull the lever for Hillary when the time comes.

Because, you know.

I have never pulled the lever for a candidate I found pathetic and loathsome. I don't care what in the hell their policies are, or what Team they are a part of.
   3104. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 17, 2014 at 10:31 PM (#4728960)
I have never pulled the lever for a candidate I found pathetic and loathsome. I don't care what in the hell their policies are, or what Team they are a part of.


Policy matters. Outcomes matter.

And for the record I find them neither pathetic nor loathsome. Just less than ideal.
   3105. greenback calls it soccer Posted: June 17, 2014 at 11:10 PM (#4728971)
I have never pulled the lever for a candidate I found pathetic and loathsome. I don't care what in the hell their policies are, or what Team they are a part of.

Congratulations on maintaining your purity, but you don't understand the point of politics. Go watch 'Lincoln' some time.
   3106. GregD Posted: June 17, 2014 at 11:33 PM (#4728982)
The Koches vacillated between unconcerned about the Republican Party and antagonistic to it until they saw Obama start threatening to take some economic actions. Their commitment to the R Party is recent and driven by policy.

The research does show that elites have more access to politicians and more impact on outcomes than other people. None of it, like zero, shows that there aren't significant policy differences between parties.

And of course there's a big difference in economic policies between a Clinton and a R candidate in 2016.

A R candidate will push for tax reduction focused upon the top bracket. An R sweep would lead to a push for a VAT as a way to really save rich people a lot of money. An R candidate will try to roll back the Obama tax increases. An R candidate will work to cut social programs dramatically, including the EITC that they claim to love in think tank conferences but fight against whenever they can.

No differences? Does anyone remember the Bush tax cuts? And how hard Rs fought to make sure that every single dollar went only to the rich, and how much work it took to get any portion of that tax cut to middle-class people? Does anyone think that the Rs are more moderate now than in 2002? Saying there is no difference is just blindness.
   3107. JE (Jason) Posted: June 17, 2014 at 11:38 PM (#4728985)
Here's an extended excerpt from tomorrow's WaPo ed by Doran (Brookings) and Boot (CFR), entitled "The United States should not cooperate with Iran on Iraq":
Indeed, the non-jihadist Syrian opposition insists that ISIS is a creation of Iran. In typical Middle East fashion, the Syrians overstate the case, but there is much evidence that Iran and its Syrian allies have cooperated with ISIS. Don’t forget that ISIS (then known as al-Qaeda in Iraq) was launched by the late Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who, U.S. intelligence believes, received aid, shelter and financial support from Iran after he was chased out of Afghanistan by U.S. forces in 2001. Zarqawi received even more support from Iran’s close ally, Syria, which allowed its territory to be used to supply al-Qaeda in Iraq with a steady stream of foreign fighters.

As recently as 2012, the Treasury Department identified Iran as supportive of ISIS, which has reportedly grown fat in no small part due to deals with the Assad regime for oil from wells under its control. That’s right. According to Western intelligence sources, Assad, Iran’s top client in the region, has a business partnership with ISIS even though ISIS has been fighting his regime. (Assad’s motives are varied, but among them is thought to be a desire to boost jihadist fighters so as to discredit the opposition in Western eyes.)

But even if we were to assume that Iran is truly ISIS’s implacable enemy, that doesn’t mean it would be a good idea for the United States to cooperate with Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps — an organization that has been responsible for attacks against U.S. targets stretching back more than 30 years. We have seen in Syria how Iranian-backed forces go about putting down a Sunni-led insurgency. More than 150,000 people have already been killed in the Syrian civil war and millions more uprooted from their homes. The Assad regime has become notorious for dropping “barrel bombs” on civilians and even using chemical weapons.

Iranian-backed groups used equally brutal methods in Iraq during the height of the fighting after al-Qaeda’s bombing of the Samarra mosque in 2006. Shiite extremists became notorious for kidnapping and torturing Sunnis. Those same groups stand on the front lines today of Shiite resistance to ISIS.

The United States would be making a historic error if it were to assist such an Iranian-orchestrated ethnic-cleansing campaign with air power or even with diplomatic support. Not only would this be morally reprehensible, it would be strategically stupid because it would convince the region’s Sunni Muslims that the United States is siding against them with Iran and its regional allies. This could lead Sunni states such as Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates to support extremists such as ISIS, further feeding the growing sectarian conflict across the region.

Instead, the United States should develop a coalition of our traditional allies dedicated to building up an alternative to al-Qaeda in the vast battlefield now stretching from Baghdad to Damascus. Such a policy will require training and equipping non-jihadist fighters of the Free Syrian Army while working to pull the Iraqi government out of Iran’s orbit. The latter goal will probably require a strenuous effort to scuttle Maliki’s bid for a third term in favor of a more inclusive leader. The United States should also work covertly, as it did during the 2007-2008 surge, to destroy Iranian networks in Iraq.
   3108. Mefisto Posted: June 17, 2014 at 11:53 PM (#4728988)
If Max Boot says so, I'm sure convinced.
   3109. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:10 AM (#4728996)
For starters, here's Scott Walker. No baggage there, nosiree.


I'm not suggesting Walker's a good/poor/great/ or average candidate for '16, but the John Doe investigation chasing Walker around for years is 100% grade A bullshit. The prosecutors involved in the John Doe matter will be fortunate to avoid paying damages to the groups they are presently targeting.

I assume that Walker's other baggage must be the horror expressed by the NYT recently by not pardoning a convicted felon so he could possess a firearm and pursue his dream of working in law enforcement. To my knowledge the first time the NYT has ever howled in favor of the gun rights of anybody. Walker, has decided not to pardon anybody as Gov, which is definitely noteworthy and an interesting debate. That New Republic hit piece's biggest discovery was that Walker supports voter id laws, hardly a radical view in this country.

The story in the link you offered didn't even seem to realize that Walker's first big election win was becoming the first (R ) to win a Milwaukee County wide office in several generations, with the support of plenty of those blue districts. Walker's support in the county grew each successive election. (Walker ascended into the County Exec roll following a massive public pension scandal in which 1/2 the county board was recalled, and the county exec. was run out, others were charged, etc.)

Walker is polarizing (at least in WI and some nationally on the left) because he stuck his finger in the eye of organized labor (sans cops and firefighters), and won, and then won again.
   3110. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:11 AM (#4728997)
If Max Boot says so, I'm sure convinced.

If what you want more slam dunks, Mefisto, say the word and I'll also post excerpts from Dick and Liz Cheney's Iraq op-ed that will appear in tomorrow's WSJ.
   3111. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:20 AM (#4729001)
If what you want more slam dunks, Mefisto, say the word and I'll also post excerpts from Dick and Liz Cheney's Iraq op-ed that will appear in tomorrow's WSJ.


I'm sure this op-ed will go over well in the liberal blogosphere.
   3112. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:21 AM (#4729002)
I do seem to recall that Cheney promised Obama would be a "one term president."

Technically not incorrect, I suppose.
   3113. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:27 AM (#4729004)
I'm sure this op-ed will go over well in the liberal blogosphere.

Nothing gets by you, Ray. :)
   3114. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:41 AM (#4729011)
From the Urban Dictionary:

Obamism

1.One who gives a speech with no meaning.
2.The ability to generate heat with no light.

Left wing voter: Wow! That was some speech; I almost wet my pants half way through it.
Right wing voter: What speech?


http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Obamism
   3115. tshipman Posted: June 18, 2014 at 01:23 AM (#4729027)
I am certainly highly dissatisfied with the Republicans' economic prescriptions. I am no less dissatisfied with the Democrats'. I'm trying to make the liberals here see that they should be in the same place.


I think it's crazy to be more dissatisfied with D's economic agenda, given that the R economic agenda is default.

I am in agreement that D economic policy has been sub-optimal. If Shinzo Abe was on the other side, talking about how we would raise the price level come hell or high water, and commit to full employment no matter the inflation consequences, that would be a tougher call for me. Of course, the American political system would preclude most of that.

I am pretty sure the best policy prescription for income inequality is sustained 4% inflation. However, that is probably not possible, so I have to choose between less bad alternatives. My top economic priority is full employment. D policies seem unlikely to hinder that, while R policies seek to aggressively avoid it. For me, that makes it an easy decision.
   3116. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 18, 2014 at 01:45 AM (#4729033)
Every one of them is so loaded down with baggage that the Republican primaries are going to be like six months of Christmas. It's a party full of modern day Barry Goldwaters and William E. Millers, not one of whom would be a credible general election candidate.

Mitt Romney would be, and I would favor him to beat Hillary Clinton.


I'm sure you would. You and who else? What states would Romney win in 2016 against Hillary that he didn't win in 2012 against Obama? This should be good.

Oh, and let me know how you want to structure a bet like that. I'm assuming that it would kick in only if they actually faced each other, meaning I wouldn't win if Hillary beat another GOP candidate and you wouldn't win if Romney beat some other Democratic candidate. You can put me down for a thousand right now if those are the terms, and we can let Jason hold the post.
   3117. Publius Publicola Posted: June 18, 2014 at 06:47 AM (#4729049)
The cover-up continues:

U.S. Captures Top Suspect in Benghazi Siege, Pentagon Says

WASHINGTON — American commandos operating under the cover of night seized the man suspected of leading the deadly attack on the United States Mission in Benghazi, Libya, the government announced on Tuesday, ending a manhunt that had dragged on for nearly two years and inflamed domestic and international politics.

With drones hovering overhead, about two dozen Delta Force commandos and two or three F.B.I. agents descended on the outskirts of Benghazi just after midnight local time on Monday; grabbed the suspect, Ahmed Abu Khattala; stuffed him into a vehicle and raced away, according to officials briefed on the operation. No shots were fired, and the suspect was spirited out of Libya to a United States Navy warship in the Mediterranean.
Continue reading the main story
Related Coverage

The capture was a breakthrough in finding the perpetrators of an episode that has been politically divisive from the start. President Obama and the State Department have been buffeted by multiple investigations and charges of misleading the public about the circumstances of the attack, which cost the lives of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans on Sept. 11, 2012. The president and administration officials have strongly rebutted the allegations and accused Republicans of politicizing a national tragedy.


   3118. Lassus Posted: June 18, 2014 at 07:17 AM (#4729051)
It is hilahilArious (Hillaryous?) to see the liberals here go on and on about how the Clintons are loathsome and pathetic people, and yet these same liberals will nevertheless pull the lever for Hillary when the time comes

Wat?
   3119. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: June 18, 2014 at 08:01 AM (#4729057)
Wat?


Ray finds practical politics degrading to his vital bodily fluids.

entitled "The United States should not cooperate with Iran on Iraq"


In that the United States shouldn't "cooperate" with anyone in that entire mess of ######-upedness, Max Boot's blind squirrel may have stumbled upon an acorn of sorts here.
   3120. Lassus Posted: June 18, 2014 at 08:28 AM (#4729062)
Ray finds practical politics degrading to his vital bodily fluids.

I'm just trying to figure out who he's talking about.
   3121. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 09:45 AM (#4729121)
In that the United States shouldn't "cooperate" with anyone in that entire mess of ######-upedness, Max Boot's blind squirrel may have stumbled upon an acorn of sorts here.


How long until the Kurds declare independence?
   3122. The Good Face Posted: June 18, 2014 at 09:52 AM (#4729130)
If you could achieve a political consensus that could return us to 1970's level of income inequality, by normal policy means (i.e. taxes, tariffs, spending, subsidies, etc., nothing grossly immoral) but you had to agree to outlaw abortion to get the votes, would you do it? I'll even throw in Universal Health Care, Canada style.


Absolutely not. Any sensible conservative not burdened by religious superstition would not only support abortion and birth control, but would push for them to be publically funded. Any woman who both wants an abortion AND is unable to pay for it is EXACTLY the sort of person who should not be procreating.
   3123. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 09:55 AM (#4729134)
Absolutely not. Any sensible conservative not burdened by religious superstition would not only support abortion and birth control, but would push for them to be publically funded. Any woman who both wants an abortion AND is unable to pay for it is EXACTLY the sort of person who should not be procreating.

It is absolutely anathema to conservatism to view children as a bad thing, and/or to think that it's anyone's business how many children someone else has.
   3124. Random Transaction Generator Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:08 AM (#4729144)
It is absolutely anathema to conservatism to view children as a bad thing, and/or to think that it's anyone's business how many children someone else has.


Conservatives hate OTHER people's children, especially if they are poor and/or not from the proper ethnic/racial/religious background and/or not raised by a man and a woman together.

Otherwise, why would they be so happy to try and limit food stamps and school lunches?
   3125. The Good Face Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:09 AM (#4729145)
It is absolutely anathema to conservatism to view children as a bad thing, and/or to think that it's anyone's business how many children someone else has.


Those are religious beliefs, not conservative ones.
   3126. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:13 AM (#4729151)
It is absolutely anathema to conservatism to view children as a bad thing, and/or to think that it's anyone's business how many children someone else has.


I'm glad we've never had to hear any true conservatives complaining that poor inner-city wogs are spewing out litters just to get more welfare.
   3127. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:16 AM (#4729154)
Conservatives hate OTHER people's children, especially if they are poor and/or not from the proper ethnic/racial/religious background and/or not raised by a man and a woman together.

Otherwise, why would they be so happy to try and limit food stamps and school lunches?


I remember in the late-90s there was a push for a "family cap" in several states, limiting the number of children that could be covered under all forms of government assistance. I know several states actually passed this, I don't know how widespread it got.

EDIT: 23 states per wikipedia. Family cap.
   3128. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:22 AM (#4729157)
How long until the Kurds declare independence?

It's (still) not in the Kurds' interest to declare independence, Scott. They have the best of all worlds now -- de facto statehood without many of the de jure responsibilities.

EDIT: Not to mention that a declaration of independence would ruin all of the progress they have made with Turkey over the past few years.
   3129. The Yankee Clapper Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:28 AM (#4729162)
Some polling news, and - brace yourselves - it's not good for Obama:
President Barack Obama’s approval rating is tied for the lowest mark since the beginning of his presidency, a new poll says.

According to a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, 41 percent of respondents approve of Obama’s performance as president, tied for the lowest point in his presidency. His approval rating on foreign policy sits at 37 percent, setting a new low.

Looks like a trend.
   3130. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:34 AM (#4729168)
It is hilahilArious (Hillaryous?) to see the liberals here go on and on about how the Clintons are loathsome and pathetic people, and yet these same liberals will nevertheless pull the lever for Hillary when the time comes


Because she is far far far less loathsome than whomever the GOP is likely gonna run.

   3131. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:36 AM (#4729171)
It is absolutely anathema to conservatism to view children as a bad thing, and/or to think that it's anyone's business how many children someone else has.


I'm glad we've never had to hear any true conservatives complaining that poor inner-city wogs are spewing out litters just to get more welfare.

But don't forget the cellphones and big screen TVs.
   3132. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:42 AM (#4729175)
I remember in the late-90s there was a push for a "family cap" in several states, limiting the number of children that could be covered under all forms of government assistance. I know several states actually passed this, I don't know how widespread it got.


Slate today.
   3133. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:43 AM (#4729176)
Some polling news, and - brace yourselves - it's not good for Obama:

Of course linking to these polls wouldn't fall into your "job" category, but that's cool. I can see why the Republicans are still clinging to Benghazi, and praying that something, anything sticks.
   3134. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:50 AM (#4729181)
I remember in the late-90s there was a push for a "family cap" in several states, limiting the number of children that could be covered under all forms of government assistance. I know several states actually passed this, I don't know how widespread it got.

Slate today.


Well that was unexpected in its timeliness.
   3135. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:54 AM (#4729187)
I can see why the Republicans are still clinging to Benghazi, and praying that something, anything sticks.

That's silly, Andy. With a 37 percent approval rating on foreign policy, I think it's pretty clear that the concerns raised over Benghazi have gotten some traction.

EDIT: You may remember that Bush's numbers vis-a-vis Iraq didn't substantially deteriorate until after Cindy Sheehan and Katrina became front-page news. Now that Obama is struggling to contain messes all over the globe, Americans are way more likely to take the Benghazi concerns seriously.
   3136. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:54 AM (#4729188)
Of course linking to these polls wouldn't fall into your "job" category, but that's cool. I can see why the Republicans are still clinging to Benghazi, and praying that something, anything sticks.


People actually governing will have lower poll numbers than people who just talk about how much better they'd be than the other guys at governing.

That said, Clinton's approvals will drop as she cycles back into the media spotlight as a candidate. Of course, her opponent's approvals will likely do the same. There's no reason to date to think the GOP have found a solution to their "national elections" problem.
   3137. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:57 AM (#4729191)
That's silly, Andy. With a 37 percent approval rating on foreign policy, I think it's pretty clear that the concerns raised over Benghazi have gotten some traction


Or maybe it has to do with foreign policy news people care about, like Iraq.
   3138. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 10:59 AM (#4729196)
Maybe it has to do with his foreign nature as a crypto-Kenyan.
   3139. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:02 AM (#4729200)
Or maybe it has to do with foreign policy news people care about, like Iraq.

That's why I typed "some traction," Mouse. Also see what I subsequently wrote ("EDIT").
   3140. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:06 AM (#4729203)
He's done a poor job in foreign policy by any objective measurement. Failed to effectively counter the rise of ISIS and Putin, pointless surge in Afghanistan, the Benghazi fiasco, the continued march of Islamism generally, and on and on. Only a partisan fanboy could conclude otherwise.
   3141. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:13 AM (#4729217)
I'm glad we've never had to hear any true conservatives complaining that poor inner-city wogs are spewing out litters just to get more welfare.

It is true to a strain of conservatism to say that you shouldn't have to pay for other peoples' children. It is not part of any strain of conservatism I know to say that people don't have the right to have as many children as they want.
   3142. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:15 AM (#4729219)
Never mind.
   3143. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:16 AM (#4729222)
Of course linking to these polls wouldn't fall into your "job" category, but that's cool. I can see why the Republicans are still clinging to Benghazi, and praying that something, anything sticks.

People actually governing will have lower poll numbers than people who just talk about how much better they'd be than the other guys at governing.

That said, Clinton's approvals will drop as she cycles back into the media spotlight as a candidate. Of course, her opponent's approvals will likely do the same. There's no reason to date to think the GOP have found a solution to their "national elections" problem.


All true, but I think that the largely male group that comments here underestimates the pull that the first female presidential candidate is likely to have on turnout. And yes, I know that there are tens of millions of conservative women who despise Hillary every bit as much as Ray or Sugar Bear, but those women wouldn't vote for any Democrat to begin with.

What I think you're going to see is that the Republicans---who already have a huge demographic problem on the national level---are going to sense the frustration of having to run against a woman while at the same time having to pull their punches on the personal level for fear of igniting a backlash. I think you're also going to see more and more complaints about the media's pro-Hillary "bias" (in spite of all evidence to the contrary) and related complaints that "you can't attack a woman without being called a sexist". And don't think that the Democrats don't have more than many skilled operatives who are going to know exactly how to frame all this in order to bring out the vote.

And of course that doesn't even factor in the Republican clown show candidates, who are going to have to appease their Hillary-loathing base in order to gain traction in the primaries. If they've figured out a way to avoid letting their right wing base's obsessions from becoming the face of their party, they've sure kept it a secret up to now.
   3144. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:17 AM (#4729223)
He's done a poor job in foreign policy by any objective measurement.


Compared to what?

To what Bush did? Obama is light years better. Compared to Clinton? Roughly equivalent. Compared to Bush the Elder? A fair amount better.

To the platonic ideal of what SBB thinks is important? Who (other than SBB) cares? Most of the things you list are not actually in the President's control, and thinking they are is what led Bush the Younger into pointless (expensive) wars.

ISIS: Minor. And the "solution" (more involvement in region) worse than the disease.
Putin: Hardly Obama's fault.
Pointless surge in Afghanistan: Point, but the GOP alternative was worse.
Benghazi: You really need to get over it. Minor tragedy, happens in every presidency.
Continued march of Islamism: Your bogeyman. Scary.
   3145. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:19 AM (#4729225)
I'm glad we've never had to hear any true conservatives complaining that poor inner-city wogs are spewing out litters just to get more welfare.

It is true to a strain of conservatism to say that you shouldn't have to pay for other peoples' children.


They're willing to pay for some. Treating some children as worthy of support and those above that number otherwise certainly seems to run against claims of "It is absolutely anathema to conservatism to view children as a bad thing, and/or to think that it's anyone's business how many children someone else has." Perhaps these bills were implemented by RINOS and false Scottsmen.
   3146. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:20 AM (#4729226)
To what Bush did? Obama is light years better.

In what way? The top foreign policy objective of the United States is to stem the tide of and roll back Islamism and he's done a poor job. Better than Bush? Not clear. "Light years" better? Pure fanboy.
   3147. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:21 AM (#4729228)
Compared to Bush the Elder? A fair amount better.

We are well aware of your views on W, Mouse. (Actually, the "Putin: Hardly Obama's fault" assertion is good for a belly laugh.) To claim that Obama's foreign policy is "a fair amount better" than the ultimate realist, George H. W. Bush, however, is nothing short of stunning.
   3148. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:22 AM (#4729229)
Never mind.


Aw c'mon, I want to learn more about what a dirty hippie I am.
   3149. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:24 AM (#4729231)
dirty hippie

Talk about a redundancy.
   3150. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:31 AM (#4729239)
I love it when two tough Jews get together for an old fashioned brawl. But if I were Jason I'd make sure that the Marquis of Queensbury was the third man in the ring.
   3151. BDC Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:31 AM (#4729240)
This story seems like grist to the OTP mill: US Patent office cancels Redskins trademark:

The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board canceled six trademark registrations owned by the Washington NFL club today, ruling that the term "Redskins" was disparaging to "a substantial composite" of American Indians when the marks were granted between 1967 and 1990.


And evidently one cannot hold a disparaging trademark. I wonder how often this rule is enforced?
   3152. GregD Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:32 AM (#4729241)
And evidently one cannot hold a disparaging trademark. I wonder how often this rule is enforced?
I am curious about both your question and also the question of what the precise consequences of this are. Anyone can sell stuff labeled Redskins as long as it doesn't show the logo? Is that the sum total?
   3153. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:33 AM (#4729242)
   3154. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:33 AM (#4729243)
Perhaps these bills were implemented by RINOS and false Scottsmen.

No, they were implemented by politicians trying to score electoral points.

But, you could be a principled conservative and say there should be zero Gov't welfare, so I'm not sure what your point is.

Good Face was saying certain people should not have children. That's different from saying you won't get extra welfare benefits for having more children.
   3155. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:34 AM (#4729244)
To what Bush did? Obama is light years better.


Better, but only because he didn't start any wars on a trumped up basis. Sure he was clearly better than Dubya, but jeez that's an awfully low bar. I think Obama has clearly been worse than both Clinton and GHWB because he could have done a hell of lot better simply by not continuing many of Dubya's policies and unwound them instead.

Part of the problem is that the left is reluctant to address Obama's foreign policy blunders because they're afraid that its an "either or" situation - either defend Obama or agree with neo-con criticisms. Well it's not a binary choice- the fact that neo-con criticism ranges from merely wrongheaded (see many of JE's posts for clear examples) to delusionally insane (see most foreign policy "experts" that FOX puts on) doesn't mean that Obama has been any good at foreign policy.






   3156. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:35 AM (#4729247)
Actually, the "Putin: Hardly Obama's fault" assertion is good for a belly laugh.


What could Obama have done to change Putin's behavior?
What did Bush do?

To claim that Obama's foreign policy is "a fair amount better" than the ultimate realist, George H. W. Bush, however, is nothing short of stunning.


Bush the Elder's wars were much better executed than the Younger's, I will grant you that. However Gulf War I was foolish, both in that Saddam somehow thought no one cared if Kuwait was invaded (sounds like a failure to me) and then our invasion on behalf of Kuwait, which was dumb (and result in huge tragedy in the following decades). We gained very little, but at least the short term cost was low. Not exactly high praise.

His other wars were a mixed bag, but since I am generically opposed to war, and that is not a secret, I am not sure why you are surprised at my evaluation. Since you love you some war, of course you thought he was awesome.
   3157. GregD Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:36 AM (#4729249)
I actually think Obama and Bush the Elder have pretty similar foreign policy views. They're responding to different situations, obviously, but they're both essentially realists. Clinton is hard to judge since a lot depends on how much you weight some very public disasters and how much you weight the lack of bad news on many other fronts, and how you decide what a president is responsible for.

G W I think is to me pretty clearly the worst foreign policy president we've ever had. I don't blame presidents for situations that land in their laps--I doubt any president could have prevented 9/11--and I don't blame presidents for close calls that go against him, but GW is Captain Unforced Error.
   3158. The Good Face Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:40 AM (#4729258)
Good Face was saying certain people should not have children. That's different from saying you won't get extra welfare benefits for having more children.


Yes. How is that remotely controversial? I'm sure all of us know people who should absolutely, positively should not have children, or if they have children, shouldn't have any more.

Nor did I suggest the government should determine who is allowed to have children or not. I merely suggested that a good first step would simply be to provide government funded abortions/birth control to help reduce unwanted and undesireable pregnancies.
   3159. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:40 AM (#4729259)
And evidently one cannot hold a disparaging trademark. I wonder how often this rule is enforced?


Good question.

I'm curious about this because it's my understanding that the Trademark office tried years ago to cancel the Redskins trademark and it was reversed by a court..


edit:

http://casesofinterest.com/tiki/Pro-Football+Inc.+v.+Harjo

"This decision was appealed to federal district court, who agreed with the standard as stated by the Board, but held that the TTAB lacked sufficient evidence to find ground to cancel the the Redskins mark under 2(a) of the Lanham Act."

edit 2: Then the Court of Appeals reversed but remanded for the district Court to consider Laches...
   3160. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:41 AM (#4729260)
Part of the problem is that the left is reluctant to address Obama's foreign policy blunders because they're afraid that its an "either or" situation - either defend Obama or agree with neo-con criticisms. Well it's not a binary choice- the fact that neo-con criticism ranges from merely wrongheaded (see many of JE's posts for clear examples) to delusionally insane (see most foreign policy "experts" that FOX puts on) doesn't mean that Obama has been any good at foreign policy.


Really? I have criticized Obama's foreign policy multiple times. It doesn't seem to stick with people though because it is usually things like "his drone policy is terrible", "he should have left Iraq and Afghanistan years earlier" and so on.

However most recent presidents have also been more war like than I would prefer. When they are all too warlike I am forced to judge on a sliding scale. Obama decreased the relative level of US bellicosity and so gets bonus points. Clinton Also decreased it a bit - honestly I would need more analysis to determine who did it "better" (according to me, obviously).

Bush I loved small wars that were done fast (carrying on the Reagan tradition). Bush II seemed to just love war and was a foreign policy train wreck. Turning the US from the most popular nation in the world with sky high standing into a place where by virtue of NOT being him Obama won a Nobel for Peace is truly, epically bad.
   3161. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:42 AM (#4729262)
His other wars were a mixed bag, but since I am generically opposed to war, and that is not a secret, I am not sure why you are surprised at my evaluation. Since you love you some war, of course you thought he was awesome.

The most pointless and stupid war of the last 25 years was Obama's 2009 escalation in Afghanistan. Yes, even stupider than W's Iraq.

Being "generically opposed to war" is so far out of the mainstream that it renders your commentary virtually worthless. Never using or threatening force isn't a criteria by which the foreign policy of US presidents is rightfully judged. We're a powerful nation, with worldwide interests, against whom civilizational war has been launched. We aren't in a position to be pacifist, nor is US pacifism in the interests of the US or the world.
   3162. GregD Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:43 AM (#4729263)
Better, but only because he didn't start any wars on a trumped up basis. Sure he was clearly better than Dubya, but jeez that's an awfully low bar. I think Obama has clearly been worse than both Clinton and GHWB because he could have done a hell of lot better simply by not continuing many of Dubya's policies and unwound them instead.
I think this is plausible if a bit overstated; it's not clear to me that Obama was either clearly better or worse than GHWB. I think of them as somewhat equivalent.

Part of the problem is that the left is reluctant to address Obama's foreign policy blunders because they're afraid that its an "either or" situation - either defend Obama or agree with neo-con criticisms. Well it's not a binary choice- the fact that neo-con criticism ranges from merely wrongheaded (see many of JE's posts for clear examples) to delusionally insane (see most foreign policy "experts" that FOX puts on) doesn't mean that Obama has been any good at foreign policy.
This I find harder to parse. 1) I'm not sure what "part of the problem" means. That Obama makes bad decisions because he isn't criticized more by the left? I doubt that he would change his actions based on criticism from the left; he doesn't in most areas. But that leads to 2) Why do you think that people on the left are reluctant to address his blunders? In fact there's been lots of left criticism of the continuation of Guantanamo or his actions in Afghanistan. If he bombs ISIS, there will surely be leftie criticism of that. It doesn't affect anything, but it's there. If all you mean is that when someone calls him the worst ever, people on this board don't rush to agree, I guess but 1) that's not very consequential, and 2) that's obviously in a particular context of a particular remark. I think most of the lefties on this board are critical of his foreign policy but not for the same reasons that the righties and neocons are critical of it. Since their reasons differ, it would be peculiar for the two sides to agree, right? That's disagreement coming from clarity of analysis (on both sides), not a silencing of true beliefs.
   3163. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:43 AM (#4729264)
Pretty big ruling by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) at the USPTO. In a 2-1 decision the Board canceled a group of trademark registrations that include the term “Redskins” and that are owned by the football team.

Here's the relevant section of the USC. Registration may be refused when a mark "consists of or comprises immoral, deceptive, or scandalous matter; or matter which may disparage or falsely suggest a connection with persons, living or dead, institutions, beliefs, or national symbols, or bring them into contempt, or disrepute." 15 U.S.C. § 1052.

The challengers in the cancellation proceedings were a group of Native Americans (I'm not sure who backed them). They essentially got the TTAB to agree that the mark is disparaging to Native Americans as used in connection with the football team.

The Redskins argued that the mark is old, well used, and the subject of significant investment. However, the Board rejected that argument.

The dissenting judge wrote in his dissent that the petitioners did not provide sufficient evidence that the marks were disparaging at the time they were registered (in the 1960s-1990s).

What this means:

1. Obviously, it's not over. The Redskins may ask for a rehearing or appeal to federal court.

2. In the meantime, the Redskins can still use the mark. They won't have a federal registration anymore but they can still rely on state laws for protection. Though it sort of presents an odd situation: the owners would be suing for trademark infringement based on a common law mark that has been canceled at the federal level as being disparaging. Would a court be willing to entertain an argument that the Redskins are coming to it with unclean hands?

But yes, a pretty big blow for the team.
   3164. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:45 AM (#4729268)
I actually think Obama and Bush the Elder have pretty similar foreign policy views.


To my mind, Gulf War I and the legacy that turned into changes my mind. Perhaps I am using hindsight unfairly though, because at the time I thought he was reasonably realistic. But yeah you can clump Obama, Bush (elder) and Clinton together and would need to parse closely who one favors and why and it would be reasonably subjective. Shrug is miles below the rest, and perhaps the worst foreign policy president since ... not sure. Most of the other "worst presidents ever" got their "kudos" from domestic disasters (looking at you James Buchanan).
   3165. BDC Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:45 AM (#4729269)
Anyone can sell stuff labeled Redskins as long as it doesn't show the logo?

The USA Today story says exactly that:

Without federal trademark protection, others could potentially use the team's name and logos to sell merchandise with impunity


Which seems like a funny way of discouraging disparagement: flood the market with more of it … but of course the idea is to leverage the team into changing its name. Mere disparagement is protected, I suppose, or they wouldn't be able to sell "JETER ####S" T-shirts.

(Thanks to Ray for further analysis!)
   3166. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:49 AM (#4729275)
What could Obama have done to change Putin's behavior?
What did Bush do?

I was dissatisfied with W's less than forceful response to the invasion of Georgia but then Obama amazingly elected to reward Putin by undoing the Bush administration's sanctions and strengthening of ties to Russia's nervous neighbors from the Black Sea to the Baltic to the Caspian, while talking up the "reset," thereby positing that W, not Putin, was the cause of the tension.
   3167. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:50 AM (#4729276)
Being "generically opposed to war" is so far out of the mainstream that it renders your commentary virtually worthless. Never using or threatening force isn't a criteria by which the foreign policy of US presidents is rightfully judged. We're a powerful nation, with worldwide interests, against whom civilizational war has been launched. We aren't in a position to be pacifist, nor is US pacifism in the interests of the US or the world.


I did not say I was pacifistic (that is more idealistic than I can lay claim to), but I do start out opposed to war, and need to be convinced as to its rightness. Yes, shocking I know, but historically a majority of wars have been bad ideas, and so I think starting one's evaluation of a particular war as "bad idea" and needing evidence to push it into "good idea" territory is - sadly - a minority view.

The fact that it is a minority view, does not of course, render it worthless. Though I do find it amusing as a criticism from someone who is constantly trumpeting his "difference" and "heterodoxy" from standard opinion. I guess different is only good when it is your opinion, from someone else difference is "virtually worthless".
   3168. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:51 AM (#4729277)
merely wrongheaded (see many of JE's posts for clear examples)

But do you respect me in the morning?
   3169. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:52 AM (#4729278)
And evidently one cannot hold a disparaging trademark. I wonder how often this rule is enforced?


I don't want to live in a country in which I can't walk down to the store & buy N***** Head Oysters.

(Surely those no longer exist. I'm at work & dasn't Google the product.)
   3170. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:53 AM (#4729280)
What could Obama have done to change Putin's behavior?

Not caved on the missile sites in Poland and the Czech Republic.
   3171. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:53 AM (#4729281)
The most pointless and stupid war of the last 25 years was Obama's 2009 escalation in Afghanistan. Yes, even stupider than W's Iraq.


Not even close, this is wanton delusional stupidity on your part and that is OBJECTIVE fact as you are so want to call things.

Obama was trying to extricate himself from a hole someone else dug- he didn't do a good job of it.

With Iraq Dubya and the neo-con imbeciles created a situation that has resulted in far far far more death and destruction and economic harm than Obama's Afghanistan surge policy- the gulf is so vast that your statement is actually dumber than anything you have ever posted about Jack Morris' HOF candidacy.
   3172. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:54 AM (#4729282)
The fact that it is a minority view, does not of course, render it worthless.

It does as an objective analyst of the foreign policy of US presidents.
   3173. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:54 AM (#4729283)
3166. Fine, but what should he have done? It sounds to me like Obama was trying to use carrots and sticks, which is fairly classic. The fact that it did not work, since the Ukraine adventure seemed to be somewhat unplanned by Putin (in the sense that it was a resort he went to based on events and not his plan all along) and Putin saw his interests as outweighing most possible carrots and sticks, what should Obama have done?

Put another way, surely you don't think failing to lift sanctions would have changed Putin's behavior at all? Especially as you were arguing that the sanctions Obama has been negotiating in response to Ukraine were basically useless.
   3174. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:54 AM (#4729285)
But do you respect me in the morning?


ummm, err... yes.. that's the ticket.
   3175. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:56 AM (#4729286)
What could Obama have done to change Putin's behavior?


Gazed into his eyes & then rhapsodized like a besotted schoolgirl about how he'd seen his soul?
   3176. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:56 AM (#4729287)
Fine, but what should he have done?


Not be a Democrat
Not be black
Not be named Obama
Not have been born in Kenya
Not be POTUS
all of the above

edit: Actually if he did everythng the neocons wanted many of them would be willing to forgive the above failings...
   3177. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:57 AM (#4729288)
I love it when two tough Jews get together for an old fashioned brawl. But if I were Jason I'd make sure that the Marquis of Queensbury was the third man in the ring.


I actually tried some sparring under London Prize Ring rules (the rules that preceded the Queensbury boxing rules), using small MMA gloves. So summarize, LPR rules were bare-knuckles (had to draw the line there, I'm too pretty!), upper-body throws allowed but no trips. A round ended when a knee struck the ground regardless of if it was from a knockdown or throw.

It was exhausting. I was terrible at the wrestling aspects. And it was totally awesome. It was like the UFC with no double-leg takedowns or groundfighting, which frees up your footwork to support more complex punching techniques than you see in MMA where fighters have to be ready to sprawl. I ended up having a brief meeting with a well-known regional MMA promoter I'd known casually for years, and pitched him on the idea of reviving the LPR rules as a novelty, holding a tournament on the undercard of his regular shows to crown an "Heir to John L. Sullivan".

He listened respectfully and said, "Mike, I know you know this stuff, but it's a stupid idea."

Dagnabbit!
   3178. OCF Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:59 AM (#4729290)
To bring it back to GHW Bush:

If the endgame in Iraq was going to be a three-way division of the country along ethnic/religious lines, we could have had that in 1991.

To re-set the scene: the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait had been removed and the invading army destroyed. Bush issues a public statement that appears to encourage Iraqis to rebel against Saddam. A large-scale urban rebellion does break out, Shia-led and focused on southern cities like Basra, Najaf, and Karbala. The U.S. reaction can be summed up as, "Oh noes, not another Khomeiniist Shiite theocracy, we can't have that." Saddam counterattacks. The no-fly policy applies to fixed-wing aircraft but not to helicopters, and Iraqi attack helicopters are deployed against urban targets to devastating effect. The Republican Guard, Saddam's best army units, were not part of the Kuwait invasion. Now they are sent to the rebelling cities. The rebellion is put down, with considerable brutality, and Saddam regains control of 2/3 of Iraq (the Kurds remain de facto autonomous). And the Iraqi Shiites felt betrayed by the U.S.

The possible 1991 alternate history: The U.S. notes that Sistani is not Khomeini and throws some support behind the Shia rebellion. The U.S.-led coalition delivers the following message to Saddam: "Your helicopters will not fly. If we see them, we will shoot them down. Your army will stay in its barracks. If we see mechanized or motorized military units in transit heading towards the cities in rebellion, we will destroy them from the air." It should be noted that that would not have been an idle threat, as the destruction on the road north out of Kuwait was fresh in everyone's memory. Then send unarmed convoys with humanitarian and economic aid to the rebelling cities. (Of course, Iran would have sent their own convoys.) The result? Three-way partition. The Sunni middle would still be in Baathist hands, but you could hope for a coup or an assassination bringing some realist general into power there. The status of the city of Baghdad would be a sticking point - it might look like Beirut in the 70's.

There's a lot not to like about this, but how would it have been any worse than what we now have?



   3179. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 11:59 AM (#4729291)
Perhaps these bills were implemented by RINOS and false Scottsmen.

No, they were implemented by politicians trying to score electoral points.

But, you could be a principled conservative and say there should be zero Gov't welfare, so I'm not sure what your point is.


But they weren't passing bills for zero government welfare.
   3180. Bitter Mouse Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:02 PM (#4729294)
It does as an objective analyst of the foreign policy of US presidents.


Not even close to correct. Among other things, if my preference is (for example) 10% more negative towards war than the median observer, and I apply that "bias" across all presidents then the relative ranking on that metric of the presidents is not impacted. In absolute measure they all are hurt because of my preference, but in relative measure for that metric no harm no foul. A pro war nut has the exact same issue of course, with the relative rankings also intact but the "sign" flipped.

Of course across all dimensions of foreign policy the relative weight of war versus other objectives matters, but we have not addressed the weight I put to wars, merely my generic feelings toward them. Personally I think war is a pretty darn large component of foreigh policty though, I admit.
   3181. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:02 PM (#4729295)
It sounds to me like Obama was trying to use carrots and sticks, which is fairly classic.

Obama's "reset" discarded the sticks, Mouse.
   3182. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:04 PM (#4729296)
Put another way, surely you don't think failing to lift sanctions would have changed Putin's behavior at all? Especially as you were arguing that the sanctions Obama has been negotiating in response to Ukraine were basically useless.

Obama threatened additional sanctions if Russia interfered in Ukraine's presidential elections. When Russia clearly interfered, guess what? No additional sanctions materialized.
   3183. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:05 PM (#4729297)
I don't want to live in a country in which I can't walk down to the store & buy N***** Head Oysters.


One of Crumb's most notorious.
   3184. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:07 PM (#4729300)
I love it when two tough Jews get together for an old fashioned brawl. But if I were Jason I'd make sure that the Marquis of Queensbury was the third man in the ring.

Wait, what? When did this happen?
   3185. JE (Jason) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:11 PM (#4729306)
Pretty big ruling by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) at the USPTO. In a 2-1 decision the Board canceled a group of trademark registrations that include the term “Redskins” and that are owned by the football team.

Chief Wahoo is not amused.
   3186. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:12 PM (#4729307)

One of Crumb's most notorious.


Rest assured that I was thinking of that strip when I typed what I did ...
   3187. Howie Menckel Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:15 PM (#4729308)

Bloomberg story re political ad spending - as Chris Mathews would say, "Let's play Hardball!"

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-06-18/democrats-griping-about-false-ads-respond-with-deception.html

"Even as Democratic Party leaders denounce billionaire Republicans Charles and David Koch for filling the airwaves with misleading commercials, they’re also playing with the facts.

PolitiFact, a St. Petersburg, Florida-based group that tests the accuracy of political commercials, checked six ads sponsored by a Senate Democratic super-political action committee. It found four to be “false” or “mostly false” and another “half true.” Only one was deemed “mostly true.”.....

A review of Democratic outside organizations shows they’re turning to their own lineup of billionaire donors, creating a secretive network and airing streams of misleading television commercials.

And by some measures, they’re surpassing their Republican counterparts: Democratic super-PACs have outraised their rivals $114 million to $71 million, and top donors have been more generous than those on the Democratic side, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics."

   3188. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:25 PM (#4729332)
One of Crumb's most notorious.

Rest assured that I was thinking of that strip when I typed what I did ...


I'm a huge fan of Crumb's artwork, mostly the more realistic and less grotesque stuff, but I don't think there was any other time in history he could have gotten so successful as the time he did. While all the social boundaries swept away in the last 30 years or so may have opened new avenues for satire there's simply no way many of his most famous works could have garnered popular acclaim today as they are absolutely rife with uncompromising racist imagery, misogyny, and - well, I won't link anything, but you know it's out there if you want to look.

I love his Illustrated Book of Genesis, which I gave as a Christmas gift to half-a-dozen of my more devout friends back down South a few years back. One of my dearest old friends, a biblical literalist, told me he was scared to open it for a good week because he knew of Crumb's reputation but finally cracked it open after having a few drinks one night! And of course he loved it, because it really is well done and doesn't deviate from the biblical text at all.
   3189. DJS and the Infinite Sadness Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:27 PM (#4729336)
In case you're not following -- or in the case of the few of you, are in support of anything bad done to tea party or conservative groups -- the IRS "lost" more emails.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/lawmakers-irs-lost-more-emails-in-tea-party-probe/2014/06/17/f81ca68c-f63b-11e3-afdf-f7ffea8c744a_story.html

The two named people were deputy commissioner Steven Miller, whose computer crashed leaving emails from that specific time period completely unrecoverable and Nikole Flax, chief of staff and the one who gave Lerner the green light to coordinate with criminal justice, whose computer crashed leaving emails from that specific time period completely unrecoverable.

Man, the IRS has sure been unlucky -- or is it lucky -- with their IT service!

It's all evidence that the IRS is a lot more creative than the Bush administration was. Bush administration never thought to announce in 2006 that the incontrovertible evidence of Hussein's nuclear weapons program and pictures of the nukes were all located on 7 computers that all just happened to crash and they totally put like 120% effort in trying to get the files.
   3190. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:31 PM (#4729347)
I'm sure you've seen the Crumb documentary Terry Zwigoff did back in the '90s, YR. Fascinating.

(I had no idea till I checked IMDb just now to make sure I'd correctly remembered his first name that Zwigoff also directed Bad Santa, as well as the Daniel Clowes-based Ghost World & Art School Confidential.)
   3191. Lassus Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:42 PM (#4729360)
I'm sure you've seen the Crumb documentary Terry Zwigoff did back in the '90s, YR. Fascinating.

I lived in San Francisco from 1998-2000, and one of his (Crumb's) brothers from the film was out on a metal heating grate on Market Street much of that time.
   3192. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:43 PM (#4729364)
If you are a Broker Dealer and you lose emails, or don't effort to maintain records of said emails, you will be fined,and these fines aren't small. A month doesn't go by w/o reading in industry publications about a BD getting fined for improper email retention.

In fact the regulators all but tell you 'go and hire one of these firms and they will retain them for you.'
   3193. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:44 PM (#4729367)
I lived in San Francisco from 1998-2000, and one of his (Crumb's) brothers from the film was out on a metal heating grate on Market Street much of that time.


Had to be Max, who Wikipedia tells me is still alive. Charles was the heavy-set one who lived with their mother & committed suicide in '93.

His sisters refused to appear in the film, IIRC, but when Robert Crumb is by far the most normal of 3 brothers ... wow. What a family.
   3194. Mefisto Posted: June 18, 2014 at 12:48 PM (#4729376)
If what you want more slam dunks, Mefisto, say the word and I'll also post excerpts from Dick and Liz Cheney's Iraq op-ed that will appear in tomorrow's WSJ.


Heh. Actually, I'm happy to see lots of publicity given to the "fool me once" brigade.

the IRS "lost" more emails.


Have they caught up to the Bush Administration yet?

   3195. GregD Posted: June 18, 2014 at 01:01 PM (#4729398)
Interesting NBER study on impact of ACA on health insurance costs with Vox summary

Main reading is that pre-subsidy insurance costs went up $58-118 per month on average as insurers responded to their assumptions about a sicker insuree's pool. Since 82% of the individuals on Healthcare.gov receive subsidies, however, the overall effect is much smaller and perhaps negative for them. They pay an average of $82 per month in premiums post-subsidy and taxes.
   3196. GregD Posted: June 18, 2014 at 01:05 PM (#4729404)
Would add as edit but can't figure out how to embed a link in an edit.

This Yglesias piece also lays out some good readings of the data. The average tax credit is $264 per month, which is how ACA can both raise average prices and also lower costs for many people.
   3197. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 18, 2014 at 01:09 PM (#4729410)
Anyone can sell stuff labeled Redskins as long as it doesn't show the logo?


The USA Today story says exactly that:


Without federal trademark protection, others could potentially use the team's name and logos to sell merchandise with impunity


Which seems like a funny way of discouraging disparagement: flood the market with more of it …

I don't have to imagine what the market might be for now-unprotected Redskins souvenirs that don't feature the actual Redskins logo.

Although before stating "non-unprotected" with certainty, maybe someone can tell me if reprints of this sort of thing---or this, or this, or this---are protected or not.

   3198. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 18, 2014 at 01:19 PM (#4729432)
There's pretty clearly widespread corruption at the IRS.
   3199. Lassus Posted: June 18, 2014 at 01:19 PM (#4729433)
Would add as edit but can't figure out how to embed a link in an edit.

Make a new post with the embed, then copy/cut and paste into the edit for that old post. Then just erase the new post before posting.
   3200. GregD Posted: June 18, 2014 at 01:22 PM (#4729435)
Thanks Lassus that makes sense
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